Cork Folk Festival - Cork, Ireland  2nd-6th October 2019


Cork Folk Fest 20017 Gallery



Artist Biographies: Cork Folk Festival 2017


Friday 29th Sept 8pm Everyman Palace Theatre

Tickets€32  Booking

Amazing Donovan Biography

“Donovan singlehandedly initiated the psychedelic revolution with his album Sunshine Superman” (Rock & Roll Hall of Fame)


About Donovan

Donovan Leitch is widely regarded as one of the most influential songwriters and recording artists working today. At his induction into the R & R Hall of Fame in 2012 it was stated, “Donovan singlehandedly initiated the Pysychedelic Revolution with Sunshine Superman”.


This masterwork album he created late 1965 at 19 years of age, one year before his friends The Beatles, influencing their album Sgt Pepper’s  Lonely heart’s Club Band, and leading the way for many other artists.

It is now history that Donovan became the tutor of The Beatles on the famous trip to India, where he taught John, Paul and George the finger style guitar and many of his unique chord patterns, that would create many of the best songs and styles of The White Album.

Most notable Dear Prudence, Julia (which John asked Donovan to help him write), Blackbird, While My Guitar Gently Weeps, and many others on The White Album.

Donovan encouraged and nurtured George Harrisons songwriting. George in The Beatles Anthology said, “Donovan is all over The White Album”.

And yet Donovan is much more than the creator of the first Psychedelic Album, Sunshine Superman announced Flower Power for the first time and presented to the world the first World Music fusions of Folk, Classical, Jazz, Indian, Celtic, Arabic and Caribbean. At the age of 16 Donovan set his artist vision, to return Poetry to Popular Culture and he has done so on a worldwide scale. He was 4 years younger than The Beatles, Dylan and The Rolling Stones when he achieved all this.

As if this is not enough to say, he is chiefly responsible for introducing meditation and Eastern Philosophy into Modern Lifestyle and songwriting.

As highly influential and successful as Sunshine Superman album was, Donovan had already scored 4 Top Twenty singles, E.P.’s and two albums in his so-called ‘Folk Period’ of early 1965. Donovan received the prestigious Ivor Novella Award for his very first song Catch The Wind at 18 years young.

In his first work in 1965 the seeds of what was to come were sown. This was evident on his Classical – Jazz fusion track on his ‘Fairytale’ album of that year, ‘Sunny Goodge Street’. The lyric was first to describe the coming Bohemian Invasion of popular culture, the return of Celtic Philosophy and meditation as the door to The Source.

Donovan was oddly compared to Bob Dylan when it was Woody Guthrie that both Donovan and Dylan emulated at the time. The true similarity between them is that they are Poets of the highest Order.

It cannot be overstated that Donovan has displayed the widest variety of songwriting skill, surpassing any songwriter one can name today. The sheer range of his accomplishment is Bardic, empowering our human journey through all stages of life and, most importantly, he displays a  Poets’ true vocation, reuniting us with The Source.

Donovan in his songs of innocence, has been compared to Blake ,his metaphysical songs to Donne and Herbert, his Celtic songs to Yeats, his children’s songs to Stevenson, his Nonesense songs to Carroll and Lear, his Yoga songs to the Vedic Hymns, his Jazz Classical compositions to Ellington and Lewis, his poetic public appeal to Auden. He also is attributed with writing the first ‘Green Songs’ highlighting the threat to the Ecosystem of our Planet Earth.

It is clear there is no such composer artist like Donovan.

And Donovan is also  known for pioneering new production recording techniques in the studio, influencing many.

Donovan is also the recipient of Doctor of Letters Hertfordshire University, Officer of the Order of Arts & Letters of The French Republic, BMI Ikon Award,The Mojo Maverick Award, LifeTime BBCFolk Award and many International Awards. 2014 saw Donovan inducted into The Songwriters Hall of Fame.

The Retrospective of Donovan in 2015/2016 is eagerly awaited by those who followed him from his beginnings and by the new generations who recognise in Donovan all that they are missing in their own contemporary songwriters  Donovan returns to the concert stage as one of the most consummate solo performers of all time.

Everyman Palace 8pm DONOVAN in concert with Jules Jones & Jessie Kennedy

DONOVAN RESTROSPECTIVE will see Archival Musical Works of Donovan, an EBook Autobiography, Songbook,Poetry Collection, DVD’s, Film Screenings ,Donovan Art Works,and release of 250 unknown songs from his new BURIED TREASURES SERIES, and Memorabilia will be part of the Celebrations, culminating in an exhibition of Guitars, costume, art, posters, diaries, photographs and unique artifacts.

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Andy Irvine

Thursday 28th Sept 8pm Triskel Christchurch

Booking  Click Here

Andy Irvine has enjoyed a long and successful career as a traditional Irish musician. He has travelled the world as a solo artist and as a member of legendary Irish groups such as Planxty and Patrick Street and more recently Mozaik. Throughout his extensive career he has maintained and developed the qualities in his music, which endear him to his audience and fellow musicians alike.  After his introduction to the world of touring with Sweeney’s Men in 1965, he continued to travel the world, leaving the band in 1968 to pursue his wanderlust. He travelled through Bulgaria, Romania and Yugoslavia, studying the music traditions and styles of these nations. It was these journeys, which led him to adopt the bouzouki in his performance. This new instrument allowed him to develop his own style while learning that of the Balkan countries he visited.


On his return to Ireland, Andy formed Planxty with fellow musicians Christy Moore, Donal Lunny and Liam O’ Flynn. Planxty went on to achieve huge success and legendary status, reigniting traditional music as a popular genre. While Planxty took a break in 1967, Andy took the time to record another piece of work with Paul Brady. The two recorded a classic album together, simply entitled “Andy Irvine & Paul Brady”. Planxty regrouped from 1979 – 1983. When the group permanently disbanded, Andy began his solo career. He recorded his first album “Rainy Sundays…. windy dreams” shortly after. His second album was “Parallel Lines” a duo album with the great Scots troubadour, Dick Gaughan.

Taking a break from working solo, Andy formed a band with Donal Lunny and some European friends called Mozaik. They completed one European summer tour before Andy returned to his solo and collaborative work.  These collaborations led to the formation of Irelands first traditional “super group” Patrick Street. The group consisted of Kevin Burke (Bothy Band), Jackie Daly (De Dannan) and guitar maestro Arty McGlynn. The group toured from 1987–1990, releasing three albums in the process. They would regroup in 1993 to release a further five albums, although in between Andy recorded two solo albums. One of these albums consisted of entirely Balkan music, which Andy had learned on his earlier travels.  In 2002, Andy finally formed his “dream band”, Mozaik, with Donal Lunny, Dutch guitarist Rens van der Zalm, Hungarian bagpiper Nikola Parov and American fiddler Bruce Molsky. The group have completed tours of Australia, Europe and America and have released two highly acclaimed albums

Andy continues to tour the world with Mozaik as well as Patrick Street. He has also completed a brief series of reunion concerts with Planxty and Paul Brady in the last few years. His constant touring is testament to the fact that he is still as passionate about his music as when he began. As a musician and a living icon, Andy Irvine will remain in the Irish music scene for a long time to come.

Thursday 28th Sept 8pm Triskel Christchurch

Maighread and Tríona Ní Dhomhnaill

Sisters Maighread and Tríona Ní Dhomhnaill belong to a renowned singing family originally from the Donegal Gaeltacht.  Tríona, who was a member of The Bothy Band, formed Skara Brae in the 1960s with Maighread, Dáithí Sproule her late brother Mícheál. More recently in 2007, the sisters joined Moya Brennan and Mairéad Ní Mhaonaigh to form the group, T with the Maggies. Maighread and Tríona live performances are unforgettable heart-rending events, their unique style and repertoire of traditional singing comes down to them through generations of the Ó Domhnaill family.

Joe O’Donnell’s Shkayla -Gaodhal’s Vision

Sunday 1st October 8pm Cyprus Avenue

In 1977 Limerick violinist and composer Joe O’Donnell released Gaodhal’s Vision, fusing Celtic, Rock, Indian and other influences. It was recorded with top musicians of the day, including the late Rory Gallagher, with whom Joe enjoyed a close musical friendship. Over his musical lifetime Joe has associated with leading names in rock and folk music; Thin Lizzy, Alan Stivell, Paul Young, Henry McCullough, Gay and Terry Woods (Steeleye Span) and Chris de Burgh. It is his breadth of experience and musical understanding that shapes Shkayla so powerfully today. O’Donnell‘s Shkayla line up is: Joe O’Donnell – electric violin, mandolin, vocals. Si Hayden – guitar, Vocals. Martin Barter – keyboards, Vocals. Adrian Litvinoff – bass and Karen Milne drums. On Saturday at the Rory Gallagher Library, Joe will talk about his influences and motivation, in the release of his seminal CD Gaodhal’s Vision featuring Rory Gallagher and his experiences at the Macroom Mountain Dew Festival in 1977.

This concert came together with the help of Simon McCarthy on the Coventry Irish Society and Coventry- Cork twinning Committee at the Cork City Council.

A Tribute to Seamus Creagh

Saturday 30th Sept 8pm CIT Cork School of Music

Featuring; Na Mooneys; Mairéad & Anna Ní Mhaonaigh, Gearóid & Ciarán Ó Maonaigh, Nia Byrne & Manus Lunny,  Matt Cranitch & Jackie Daly, Aiden Coffey & Eoin O Riabhaigh & Mary MacNamara & Sorcha Costello.

Séamus Creagh (1946-2009) was born in Killucan, County Westmeath.  In 1977 Seamus Creagh made his first recording with accordion player Jackie Daly on the Gael Linn label. This album is now generally acknowledged as one of the seminal recordings of the music of Sliabh Luachra.

Na Mooneys

This is a family group comprising of sisters Mairéad Ní Mhaonaigh and Anna Ní Mhaonaigh  their brother Gearóid and his son Ciarán Ó Maonaigh (fiddle).Mairéad is well known internationally through her music and work with Altan and String Sisters. Ciarán is also well known for his music through his playing with Caitlín & Ciarán and Fidil and he achieved Ceoltóir Óg na Bliana at TG4 Gradam Ceoil in 2014. Anna was a member of Macalla, the all women musical group, and organised Scoil Gheimhridh Frankie Kennedy. Gearóid was a member of Ceoltóirí Altan and Ragairne.

Jackie Daly & Matt Cranitch

For many years, Jackie Daly (accordion) and Matt Cranitch (fiddle) have been among the foremost interpreters of the rich Sliabh Luachra tradition of instrumental music. Jackie from Kanturk has played and recorded with De Dannan, Arcady, Patrick Street and Seamus Creagh while Matt from Co Cork has recorded and toured with Na Filí, Any Old Time and Sliabh Notes. The pair featured on tours in the US and more recently appeared at Féile Seamus Creagh in St John’s Newfoundland.

Eoin Ó Riabhaigh

Son of the late Micheál Ó Riabhaigh, Eoin has played with Stokers Lodge with Jimmy Crowley, Dolores Keane, Mary Black and the great Iris DeMent. Today he enjoys teaching both at home and abroad and has recently released a long awaited debut album entitled ‘Tiomnacht’.

Mary MacNamara & Sorcha Costello

Coming from Tulla in East Clare where music is a way of life, Mary (concertina) and her daughter Sorcha (fiddle) have been playing music together since Sorcha was a young child. Over the years they have enjoyed an innate understanding of each other’s music and released an album “The Lady’s Cup of Tea” in 2016.




The Corner House Set, (De Cork De Dannan Connection)

Sunday 1st October 5pm The Oliver Plunkett Bar

Celebrating the launch of Aidan Coffey’s CD, ‘The Corner House Set’, this concert features Aidan Coffey combined with Frankie Gavin, Alec Finn and Colm Murphy who all feature on the album and have played with De Dannan. This is Frankie’s and Alec first stage appearance since their widely publicised break up in 2003. It promises be a hugely memorable concert that will once again feature thefiddle-accordion-bouzouki combination that became synonymous with the sound of De Dannan.   Also special guest at this concert will be Charlie Piggott who played with De Dannan in those early prolific years.

Aidan Coffey

From Bunmahon Co. Waterford, he joined De Dannan in 1988 and spent seven years touring and recording with them. He also recorded an album with Seamus Creagh in 1999 and last year he released a brilliant new album ‘The Corner House Set’.

Frankie Gavin
Frankie discovered the music and songs of The Flanagan Brothers in the early eighties and his musical path changed forever! The 1920’s were an era of extraordinary recordings of emigrant Irish music in New York, and The Flanagans were perhaps the most successful band playing to huge crowds, in dance halls and  even the Vaudeville circuit. De Dannan recorded a cover of ‘My Irish Molly Oh’ and  had a huge hit with the song, and the rest is history.

Alec Finn

A founding member of De Dannan, Alec Finn has been integral to the arrangement and production of all the group’s albums and live performances. He plays a round-backed Greek bouzouki; one of the older style trixordo three course (six string) instruments tuned DAD. Alec’s solo album is entitled:”The Blue Shamrock” – Irish airs played on guitar and bouzouki. He has taught master classes at The Irish World Academy of Music in the UL, and at the Catskills Festival of Music in New York.

Colm Murphy

Colm Murphy is the bodhrán tutor at the School of Music, UCC. His 1996 recording An Bodhrán – the Irish Drum is considered the benchmark album of traditional playing. A member of De Dannan for almost twenty years, Colm Murphy has played and recorded with many of Ireland’s traditional greats, including Altan, Micheál O Suilleabháin, Martin O’Connor, to name but a few. Colm will be holding an exhibition of his new paintings at The Framemaker during the folk fest weekend.

Charlie Piggott

Charlie grew up playing music in Co Cork. In the early 70s, Charlie played banjo in sessions at Galway’s Cellar Bar with Frankie Gavin (fiddle), Alec Finn (bouzouki) and Johnnie “Ringo” McDonagh (bodhrán). In 1973, the group Dé Dannan was formed from sessions at Tigh Hughes in An Spidéal. After damaging his index finger in an accident on tour he reverted to playing the melodeon.


Cathy Jordan, Jarlath Henderson & Mick Daly presented by Music Network.

Friday 29th Sept 8pm Triskel Christchurch

Noted for her earthy yet ethereal vocalisations and deceptively powerful voice, Cathy Jordan’s irrepressible energy and powerful stage presence have captivated audiences worldwide. Lead singer of trad supergroup Dervish, Jordan has performed thousands of concerts in over 40 countries, including gigs at the Great Wall of China and the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem.

For this unique tour, she is joined by Mick Daly, founder member of the ground-breaking group Four Men and a Dog, and Jarlath Henderson, youngest ever winner of the BBC Radio 2 Young Folk Award. Daly is an exceptional singer in addition to being a virtuoso guitarist and 5-string banjo player, while the Tyrone-born singer and multi-instrumentalist Henderson has won widespread acclaim for his playing alongside such luminaries as Lau, Capercaillie, Paddy Keenan, Salsa Celtica, the Peatbog Faeries and Wolfstone.


Dermot Byrne, Steve Cooney and Bríd Harper

Saturday 30th Sept 10pm An Spailpin Fanach

Featuring three of Ireland’s most well known and revered musicians, Dermot Byrne, Steve Cooney and Bríd Harper this gig guarantees spellbinding music and a concert that traditional music fans cannot afford to miss.

Dermot Byrne

Dermot hails from Buncrana in the Inishowen peninsula, and has played accordion from a very young age.  His seemingly effortless playing, combined with great subtlety, and a faultless ear, makes him one of the great accordion players of his generation. Dermot has guested on collaborations with many great musicians and bands including Altan, Sharon Shannon, Salsa Celtica, Tommy Peoples, Tim O’Brien and the late jazz violinist, Stephane Grappelli. He recently recorded a duet CD with French Harpist Floriane Blancke.

Bríd Harper

Bríd Harper is originally from Castlefinn, Co. Donegal and is now living near Dungannon Co. Tyrone. She has been hailed as one of the leading exponents of traditional fiddle playing of our time. She was senior All-Ireland Champion, Fiddler of Dooney and Oireachtas winner in 1988. Bríd has recently released her Solo Album which has been hailed as one of the best traditional albums of 2015.

Steve Cooney

Born in Melbourne, Australia, Steve Cooney started his professional musical career at the age of seventeen. He has played in rock bands including Bushwhackers, Fruitcake and the successful folk/rock band Red Gum. In 1981 he bought a one-way ticket to Ireland where he joined Stockton’s Wing, playing bass guitar and didgeridoo. Since then he has been very active performing and recording with Séamus Begley, Sharon Shannon, Martin Hayes, Mary Black, and many others.


The Casey Sisters

Friday 29th Sept 9.30pm An Spailpin Fanach

Sisters Máire Ní Chathasaigh, Nollaig Casey and Mairéad Ní Chathasaigh grew up in a West Cork household steeped in traditional music and song. Having carved very different careers, they come together for a very special concert featuring music from their first CD, ‘Sibling Revelry’.

Nollaig is one of Ireland’s most gifted musicians, with her own unique way of playing traditional Irish music on the fiddle with such a distinctive sound that it would be impossible to mistake it for that of anyone else. Her powerful presence graced Dónal Lunny’s ground-breaking band Coolfin as well as her performances with Arty McGlynn.

Máire is “the doyenne of Irish harp players” (The Scotsman) and one of Ireland’s most important and influential traditional musicians, described by the late Derek Bell as “the most interesting and original player of the Irish harp today.  She has developed a variety of new techniques, with the aim of establishing an authentically traditional style of harping.

Mairéad is a multiple All-Ireland, Oireachtas and Pan-Celtic champion, her sweet soaring voice and subtle, very traditional fiddle-playing ground the music deeply in its roots. Mairéad has a special interest in the Sliabh Luachra fiddle repertoire and style.

Máire Ní Chéileachair

Máire is an accomplished sean-nós singer. She inherited her love of singing from her family roots in Kilnamartyra.   Her singing has won many accolades including the Oireachtas Sean-Nós Na mBan trophy.

Granny’s Attic

Friday 29th Sept 6pm The Oliver Plunkett Bar and Saturday 30th Sept 10pm An Spailpin Fanach

Cohen Braithwaite-Kilcoyne (Melodeon, Concertina, and Vocals), George Sansome (Guitar, Vocals) and Lewis Wood (Fiddle, Mandolin, Vocals) – are a folk triofromWorcestershire, they play the tradition with verve, energy and their own inimitable style. These three young men are all exceptional musicians, fine singers and play a range of English, Irish and Scottish traditional music as well as their own compositions. Formed in 2009, they have been heralded for their lively performances and maturity beyond their years in their delivery and selection of traditional songs.

Granny’s Attic arrive in Cork as guests of the Warwick Folk Festival. 2013 saw the start of a twinning between Dick Dixon and the Warwick Folk Festival and Cork Folk Festival . Both festivals started over 38 years ago. The twinning celebrates both events we share ideas and experiences and give artists new stages.

Kila Saturday 30th Sept 8pm Cyprus Avenue


Kila came together in Dublin in 1987 and are one of Ireland’s most innovative and exciting bands.  Original members include, Rónán Ó Snodaigh (Bodhran), his brother Rossa (whistle), and Eoin Dillon (pipes). The schoolmates soon welcomed another Ó Snodaigh sibling Colm (flute), and began busking throughout the Dublin area.  Other members to join are Dee Armstrong (fiddle), Brian Hogan (bass), Dave Hingerty (drums), James Mahon (pipes) & Seanan Brennan (guitar). Debuting with Mind the Gap, the group returned in 1998 with Tóg É Go Bog É. Lemonade & Buns followed two years later.

‘Gals at Play’

Saturday 30th Sept 6pm An Spailpin Fanach

Are, Mary Green, Josephine Marsh, Clare Sands, Áine Whelan, Karrie Sullivan & The Hayes Sisters.

This concert is hosted by Mary Greene, is a celebration of original song and tune writing by women. The concert will be ‘In the Round’ for maximum fun, expect major cross pollination!

Mary Greene has long been an important element of the Irish folk scene along with her partner Noel Shine. She currently performs in the trio Greenshine along with Noel and daughter Ellie. Summer of 2016 they released their second album The Girl in the Lavender Dress. Follow up singles Shadowland and City of Dreams ensured Mary’s place on the honour roll of Irish songwriters.

Josephine Marsh is a multi instrumentalist best known for her distinctive accordion style which is influenced by the music of East Clare. Josephine Marsh has released two critically acclaimed albums to date and this year she intends recording another as well as compiling a book of her own beautiful compositions.

Karrie Sullivan released her first album Jelly Legged in 2011. The second album, Perpetual Motion finally came in September ’16.  The single, This Time was the 4th most played Irish song on RTE Radio 1 during ‘16.  She is currently working on her 3rd album with legendary guitarist and producer Jimmy Smyth.

Áine Whelan first performed at The Cork Folk Festival with vocal harmony group The Joyful Mysteries and since then has toured throughout the world. This year Áine has been collaborating with producer Graham Henderson on a new project. Their new album ‘Spyres’ is due for release this autumn.

Clare Sands is a multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, and composer. Having released her eclectic album ‘Join Me at the Table’ to critical acclaim in late 2016, ‘an exquisite talent’- RTE Lyric Fm, Clare has played with Luka Bloom, Jack L, Mick Flannery, Kris Drever, and many more. A unique amalgamation of Blues-Jazz-Trad-Folk, she is not to be missed at this year’s Cork Folk Festival.

The Hayes Sisters, Cathryn, Angela and Jennifer are from Stockport near Manchester. They are a 3 part folk harmonic group and have a country quality that shines through in their music. A favourite song would be ‘Daisy Chain’. They sing in union, in a way that only three sisters possibly could. Make sure to give them a listen during their visit to Cork.

Colm Murphy, Alec Finn, Sean Ryan & Brendan Begley plus Geantraí

Saturday Sept 30th 6pm The Oliver Plunkett Bar


This is a group of friends, and was put together by Colm Murphy.  They are also in town to launch Colm’s new painting exhibition at The Framemakers and to play plenty of tunes. They will be on stage at 5pm followed by Geanntraí another group of friends who first played together at the folk fest in the 80’s.

Brendan Begley is bursting with the wild and beautiful music of West Kerry. He has four acclaimed solo albums to his name, as well as numerous recordings with the groups Boys of the Lough and Beginish. He has recorded with The Chieftains, Stocktons Wing, Na Casadaigh, and Seán Davey.

Sean Ryan was born at Nenagh, Co Tipperary, he won the Oireachtas in 1954 and the Senior All Ireland Fiddle Championship in 1955 and 1956. Best known for his distinctive style of whistle playing, he has recorded two solo whistle albums, ‘Siúil Uait / Take the Air’ and ‘Minstrels Fancy’.

Geantraí              Saturday Sept 30th 6pm The Oliver Plunkett Bar

In the late 70’s and early 80’s a group of musicians who played regularly in O’ Flynn’s Pub, Union Quay in Cork formed the band Geantraí.   The line up was, Mick Power from Askeaton, (Mandolin), Ciarán Ryan from Cork  (pipes), Kieran Fahy from Tuam, (Fiddle), Kevin Carroll from Roscrea, (Bodhrán) and Ray Weldon from Cork (Guitar). During the 80’s the band played at Festivals in Belgium, Holland and Germany and in 1983 the band went to the US for the summer and played NY, Pittsburgh and the Philadelphia Folk Festival and the Cork Folk Festival. In 1985 the band broke up but they are back together for a very special concert at the folk fest.

The Diviners (Sunday 1st Oct 8pm Cyprus Avenue)

The Diviners are a new traditional music act from Cork, comprised of three friends, two Cork men and a Mayo man. Influenced by many different styles of music, including Irish and Scottish traditional music, American Old Timey Music and newly composed tunes. The members are: Mick Pierce (Banjo & Guitar), Anthony Ruby (Pipes & Vocals), and Eoin Jordan (Bouzouki & Vocals).

Torcán (Friday 29th Sept 6pm Oliver Plunkett)

Torcán are an Irish Trad Fusion band based in Cork, Ireland. Led by two-time All-Ireland medallist Jason Turk on the accordion, Torcán members Seán Murphy, Robin Turk and Brian Leach create a rich and complex sound with the fiddle, bouzouki, electric bass, guitar, whistles, and bodhrán.

The Band Anna (Friday 29th Sept 12pm Crane Lane)

Are a Cork based acoustic band; they released an EP ‘Money in the Shoebox’ in June this year. The members of the band are James McInerney – Guitar / Cello, Ryan Parsons – Violin, Nathan Daly – Percussion  and James Brown – Bass.


Stíleanna (Styles)Flute Concert

Saturday 30th Sept 2pm An Spailpin Fanach

Sean Ryan (Tipperary), Aoife Granville (Dingle), Mike Walsh (Kerry), Joanne Quirke (Cork)

Aoife Granville from Dingle is a Flute and Fiddle player and co-ordinator and founder of the Dingle Tradfest.  She has performed with Kerry Chamber Orchestra and released a Flute album, ‘Sáimhín Só’ in 2014.

Mike Walsh is a distinctive and versatile flute player from Knocknagoshel Co Kerry. He is a central part of many sessions all over the city and county and further afield.

Joanne Quirke is from Cork City; she plays and teaches fiddle, piano and harp. Joanne studied Music at University College Cork and received the Sean O Riada memorial award for performance in Irish Traditional Music.

Colombian Musicians Visiting group (Friday 29th Sept  1pm at Aula Max UCC & Sat 30th 2pm on Emmett Place)

12 Colombian musicians and harpists will play Traditional Colombian Music along with a group of Irish and Chinese teenage musicians. This event is organised bythe International Strategy Officer for Latin America at UCC.

The Ford Workers 100 Years on      (Saturday 30th Sept 2pm An Spailpin Fanach)

Presented by Bill Daly, The Ford Workers is a song event featuring songs related to the Ford Factory in Cork and Dagenham. Songs composed by Gus McLoughlin will be sung this concert and pictures of the Ford Factory by Bill will feature at the event.

Jessie Kennedy (Friday 29th Sept 8pm Everyman Palace)

Jessie Kennedy is a vocalist, composer and musician from West Cork. She has four successful albums under her belt. Her album THE CARBERY SONGS’ was released in July 2015 to great acclaim. At a performance in Rosscarbery Cathedral, Jessie was joined by Donovan, she is supporting him at his festival concert in the Everyman.

Jake Carter (Cyprus Avenue Fri 29th Sept)

Jake is the younger brother of chart topping artist Nathan Carter who is a currently the hottest country music star in Ireland. He has now started taking bookings with his new band for the second half of 2017 to develop his own fan-base with his own blend of country/pop/rock which is inspired by artists such as Rascal Flats Sat 30th Sept)and Hunter Hayes

Two Time Polka (Sat 30th Sept 11pm Oliver Plunkett)

Guitars, bass, drums, mandolin, fiddle and accordion drive the Cajun sound of this band with classic rhythms and punchy vocals. Brilliant musicianship combines with a swing-sound that defies toes to tap and makes Two Time Polka an infectious, danceable festival band. They have played at the legendry Glastonbury festival and the Electric Picnic along with numerous festivals in Europe.

Céilí Mór

Sunday 1st October 2pm Deerpark CBS

This year’s Céilí Mór, hosted by Club Ceoil Ballyphehane, features the band Arundó plus a young Céilí Band based in Tulla Co Clare led by Mary McNamara. The Fear a’ Ti will be William Hammond and it will take place at the Deerpark CBS. The line up of dances for the Céilí Mór includes (for set dancers) the Sliabh Luachra, Ballyvourney Jig, Cashel Set, Plain Set and Antrim Lancers. The dances for lovers of Céilí dances include Siege of Ennis, Walls of Limerick, Peeler and the Goat, Gay Gordon’s, Shoe the Donkey and many more.  The whole event is free including tea and refreshments.


Arundó play an eclectic mixture of traditional and contemporary Irish music. John Byrnes driving style of piping gives the band an exciting and lively sound and is very popular with dancers.  Arundó has released four albums: John and Kevin Byrne’s most recent double album, Drawn to the Flame, Live at Counihans, Tuesday Night at 39A, and The Blue Haven Sessions. These recordings capture the driving music of Sliabh Luachra, as well as the variety of musical styles which have influenced the band. Johnny Bongos who plays bodhrán and spoons with the band will also be taking a percussion workshop in Counihans Bar on Saturday of the festival.

Cork Pipers Club Concert and Tionol Classes, Beginners, Advanced & Reed Making

Saturday 3oth Sept 9.30pm SMA Community Hall Wilton, Classes, Concert Sunday 1st Oct 2.30pm St Peters Church

With Diarmuid Moynihan, Ciarán Ryan, Dave Hegarty, Rosaleen & Ciara O’ Leary, Eoin O’Riabhaigh, john Byrne,  John Mitchell.

Diarmaid Moynihan is widely acknowledged as one of Ireland’s foremost uilleann pipers and composers. A former winner of the All-Ireland Fleadh Cheoil and a founder member of the groundbreaking band, Calico he toured throughout Europe and the USA with the band.

Dave Hegarty needs no introduction to anyone who has been involved with the uilleann pipes over the last thirty years. Each summer he shares his expertise and technical knowhow of pipe and reed maintenance to many a thankful piper at the Willie Clancy Summer School.

Rose O Leary is a pipe and whistle player and teacher from North Cork; she has featured regularly at Cork Pipers Club events and will be accompanied on concertina by her daughter Ciara.

Ciarán Ryan and Eoin O Riabhaigh are from Cork and are both accomplished pipers and members of the Pipers Club since the early 80’s.

John Mitchell is a Cork pipe maker, teacher and performer and recently qualified Irish ITM Alexander teacher.

Stíleanna (Styles)Fiddle Concert

Sunday 1st Oct Sept 12.30pm An Spailpin Fanach

Bríd Harper (Tyrone), Mairéad Ní Mhaonaigh (Donegal), Kieran Fahy (Galway), Sorcha Costello (Clare), Caoimhe Flannery (Rockchapel), Garry Cronin (Cork).

Caoimhe Flannery is from Rockchapel is an All-Ireland winner. Caoimhe plays fiddle in the Sliabh Luachra style this year she won the Munster u18 fiddle and was second in the All Ireland. She played at the Seamus Creagh Concert last year and at concerts in Scartaglen and Castleisland.

Kieran Fahy is from Tuam and studied with the Royal Irish Academy of music until 1980. He also studied violin making in Cork and won first prize at the O’Carolan festival in Keadue County Roscommon in 1978. Kieran was a founder of the Belgium based Irish group, Shantalla and formed the group Rue du Canal with Ray Barron andSerge Desaunay.

Garry Cronin is a fiddle player extraordinaire; he has been playing music in Cork for over 50 decades. He has played with many groups in Cork over the years including the famous Paddy’s Goatskin and String Band. Garry was a Guitar teacher at the Cork School of Music for many years and his fiddle style is strongly influenced by Charlie and Ben Lennon for Leitrim.

Stíleanna (Styles)Concertina/Box Concert

Sunday 1st Oct Sept 3pm An Spailpin Fanach

Josephine Marsh (Clare), Mary MacNamara (East Clare), Cliona Halley (Cork), Maura O’Connor (Limerick), Jackie Daly (Kanturk), Paul Clesham (Mayo).

Cliona Halley is a concertina player and teacher from Castlemartyr. She performed with Comhaltas on a tour of Britain 2014 and in 2015 she was shortlisted as Sliabh Luachra musician of the year at the Heritage Centre in Scartaglen. Cliona features at many sessions in Cork including the Gables and The Corner House.

Paul Clesham from Mayo is a teacher of piano and concertina at Douglas Comhaltas and Club Ceoil. He won the senior concertina competition at the Fleadh Ceoil in Sligo in 2015.

Maura O’Connor is a concertina player from Abbeyfeale Co. Limerick who is currently the 15-18 all-Ireland Champion and a member of CCE Teampleglantine. She is greatly influenced by the music of Sliabh Luachra and by concertina players such as Mícheál Ó Raghallaigh, Noel Hill and Jack Talty.

The Lee Valley String Band (Corner House Sun 1st Oct)

Mick Daly, Brendan Butler, Mick O’Brien and Hal O’Neill are the Lee Valley String Band, they play each Monday night throughout the year in the Corner House Bar without fail (well nearly). They will be accompanied by Bill Whelan of the Rough Deal String Band at this year’s folk festival.

Boxcar Bertha (Corner House Sat 30th Sept)

These are four musicians who share a careful appreciation for old blues music, from the playful melodies of Mississippi John Hurt and Blind Boy Fuller to the belting dramatics of Big Mama Thornton. Featuring Martina Stafford (vocals, harp and kazoo), Pete Cahill (guitar), John Mc Aleer (bass) and Shane Scanlan (drums).

Leif (Corner House Sun 1st Oct)

Leif is Conor O Sullivan, Eoin O Brien and Barry O Shea.  Their repertoire is drawn from a host of influences ranging from Celtic to Appalachian and modern folk. They specialize in intimate acoustic sessions rooted in the story of song, made unique through their own musical interpretations. As part of the Warwick and Cork Folk Festival twinning, Leif were invited to the play this year at the Warwick Folk Festival where they were warmly received.

The Bluez Crew (Crane Lane Sun 1st Oct)

The band was started by Jeremy Nagle having returned from recording an album in California, in September 2013. The style of the band is up tempo guitar based rocking blues which is lively and danceable. The band consists of; Jeremy Nagle, Denis Gough, Keri Jones & Niall O Carroll.

The 5th Noel Brazil Contemporary Songwriting Competition.

Thursday 28th September @ 7pm The Cranel Lane Theatre

This competition has been growing since we first kicked it off back in 2013, so if you write your own music then please get in touch and enter the competition.

The rules are simple:
1. it has to be your song or a song played by someone you know.
2. The song must be played live with no more than one accompanist.
There are great prizes and trophies for the top three songs. 1st €250, 2nd €100, 3rd €50.If you have a song you’d like to enter then send an mp3 or sound cloud link to
Deadline for entries is Monday 25th September

Workshops and Master Classes

Saturday 30th Sept 11am CIT Cork School of Music

Sliabh Luachra Tunes with Matt Cranitch & Jackie Daly
In this special presentation, Jackie and Matt talk about their formative musical influences with particular reference to the Sliabh Luachra tradition, and also teach some tunes, particularly from its rich repertoire of slides and polkas. This workshop is not instrument-specific, and so participants who play any of the traditional melody instruments are welcome to attend. Also, anyone else who wishes to sit and listen is equally very welcome.

Guitar Master Class at Cork School of music with Ireland’s finest guitarist, Steve Cooney.

Concertina Master Class at Cork School of music with Mary MacNamara fromTulla in East Clare.

Percussion with Johnny Bongos Counihans Bar 3pm Saturday.

Children’s Circus Workshop at St Peters Church Saturday

Cork Singers Club

Sunday 1st Oct Sept 9.30pm An Spailpin Fanach

Established in 1993, the Cork Singers Club has been instrumental in helping in bringing about around a renewed interest in the art of singing traditional Irish songs. Members meet every Sunday night at An Spailpin Fánach and the club has only one golden rule, no instruments.  The whole idea is that people come together to celebrate the fine art of solo singing and to ensure that the great traditional songs are passed down from generation to generation and not lost in the mists of time. The Singers Club is about having fun while at the same time ensuring that the fiercely proud tradition of singing is kept alive in Cork.

Emmett Place 11am-5.30pm: FOOD & FOLK Free

Open-air market on Grand Parade featuring some wonderful food and music from Colombian Visiting Musicians, Douglas Comhaltas Adult Group and Granny’s Attic.



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